Airbus and Bombardier are to become partners on the C-series aircraft programme, with Airbus taking a majority stake.
Under the agreement, Airbus will provide procurement, sales and marketing, and customer support expertise to the C Series Aircraft Limited Partnership (CSALP), the entity that manufactures and sells the C-series. Airbus will acquire a 50.01% interest in CSALP. Bombardier and Investissement Québec (IQ) will own approximately 31% and 19% respectively.
A statement from the companies said: “The agreement brings together Airbus’ global reach and scale with Bombardier’s newest, state-of-the-art jet aircraft family, positioning both partners to fully unlock the value of the C-series platform and create significant new value for customers, suppliers, employees and shareholders.”
“This is a win-win for everybody!” said Airbus Chief Executive Officer, Tom Enders. “The C-series, with its state-of-the-art design and great economics, is a great fit with our existing single-aisle aircraft family and rapidly extends our product offering into a fast growing market sector. I have no doubt that our partnership with Bombardier will boost sales and the value of this programme tremendously.”
He added: “Not only will this partnership secure the C-series and its industrial operations in Canada, the UK and China, but we also bring new jobs to the US Airbus will benefit from strengthening its product portfolio in the high-volume single-aisle market, offering superior value to our airline customers worldwide.”
Alain Bellemare, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bombardier Inc., said: “We are very pleased to welcome Airbus to the C Series programme. Airbus is the perfect partner for us, Québec and Canada. Their global scale, strong customer relationships and operational expertise are key ingredients for unleashing the full value of the C-series. This partnership should more than double the value of the C-series programme and ensures our remarkable game-changing aircraft realises its full potential.”
Boeing was less happy at the news, following an ongoing dispute with Bombardier over government subsidies and alleged below-cost selling. The company said: “This looks like a questionable deal between two heavily subsidised competitors to skirt the US government findings. Everyone should play by the same rules for free and fair trade to work.”
Phil Musser, Boeing’s senior vice president of communications, tweeted: “If @Airbus and @Bombardier think this deal will get them around the rules…#thinkagain”